When checking the news in California and across the U.S. it is common to see sports coaches losing their jobs in both the professional and college ranks. While this is something that is fodder for talk shows and speculation, it is not always about work performance. Claims of employee rights violations can arise just as readily in the coaching industry as it can with other kinds of jobs. What those who are working in any kind of a job need to understand is that when there is a belief that workplace discrimination, wrongful termination or any other violation has taken place, they have the right to seek compensation in employment claims.
The former softball coach at a community college has filed a lawsuit alleging wrongful termination. According to her claim, she was also subjected to discrimination based on her gender, faced disability discrimination, violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act and was retaliated against because she complained. She asserts that she was dismissed without reason and, as a result, is suffering from emotional distress that began with the harassment while still on the job. She seeks compensation for damages as well as legal fees.
The woman was hired in 2009 to be an assistant softball coach. She became the head coach the next year and did not receive any written reprimands nor disciplinary action against her. In February of 2015, she lodged a complaint that she was not compensated commensurately to male coaches who performed the same duties as she did. In addition, her lawsuit says that female athletes were discriminated against by the denial of equal benefits and treatment. When she was informed that an investigation into her claims was taking place, she says the retaliatory behavior started. Her performance was disparaged, she was accused of being insubordinate, and her job was threatened. The disability discrimination allegation and FMLA issues stemmed from her having post-partum depression after her second child died in early 2014.
This case has a litany of allegations that the woman in question was mistreated. Each claim by itself can be the foundation for a lawsuit. In combination, she is making serious claims against the school. These types of problems can happen at any job. Those who believe they have been wrongfully terminated, discriminated against or had illegal workplace discrimination committed against them need to understand their rights. Speaking to a lawyer about a possible lawsuit can provide information and guidance as to how to move forward.
Source: Desert Dispatch, “Fired softball coach sues Barstow Community College,” Mike Lamb, Nov. 16, 2016